Degree course: 
Corso di First cycle degree in BIOTECHNOLOGY
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Compulsory subjects, characteristic of the class
First Semester
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (40 hours), Laboratory (12 hours)

Basic knowledge of Animal Biology, and Developmental Biology. To better follow the course, it is necessary to have passed the exams of Chemistry and Physics.

Final Examination: 

The final examination is carried out to assess the acquisition of expected knowledge and skills by conducting an ORAL test. The test consists of three questions, two on the theory and one on the laboratory practices. The question on the part of the laboratory aims to ascertain the full knowledge of what was shown during the lab practices.
The grades of the exam will be in thirties and will take account of the accuracy and quality of the responses. To pass the exam a minimum of 18/30 should be obtained. To get the maximum grades, the student must answer all 3 questions in a brilliant way, demonstrating that he can connect different aspects of knowledge.

Voto Finale

Through theoretical and practical activities, this course aims at providing students with knowledge on classical biotechnologies applied to the animal sector, including the necessary basic aspects related to the farming of animals for agricultural or biomedical uses (model animals), with particular reference to aquatic species.
In particular, the teaching course will provide knowledge on the physiology of some farmed fish species; on modern farming technologies that ensure animal welfare; on feeding and reproduction in aquaculture; on the quality of fish from aquaculture; and on techniques of artificial fertilization of different animal species, with particular reference to those of commercial interest.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course the student will be able to:
Describe the biotechnologies utilized in the main fields of use of the animals: farms, livestock production, food products of animal origin
Evaluate whether the degree of comfort of the breeding structures and the environmental characteristics are suitable to guarantee the animal welfare and possibly propose improvement solutions.
Develop innovative biotechnological approaches for the improvement of products of animal origin.
Use textbooks and online resources to further insights.
Employ appropriate terminology for a correct approach to the profession, which is also important for job interviews;
Understand and comment on a scientific publication related to animal biotechnology and understand protocols described in manuals;
Update the acquired skills by following scientific and technological progress.

After a brief introduction on the definitions and history of animal biotechnologies, the course will summarize the main practices used in the production of livestock, with particular reference to the physiology of some farmed species. The techniques of breeding of fish species for both agro-food production and as laboratory models will be treated in more detail. The limits of animal production related to its sustainability and their overcome by the use of biotechnology, will be examined, too.

LECTURES (5 ECTF, 40 hours) will address the following topics:

Biotechnology in the field of animal agriculture.
Sheep, goat, and cattle: reproductive system; hormonal regulation of reproduction; artificial insemination (evaluation, cryopreservation, and methods to choose the sex of offspring by separating X and Y sperm).
Fish species: physiology of Osteichthyes with particular reference to the most commonly cultured species. Reproductive apparatus and artificial reproduction of fish in aquaculture;
Brief notes on the types of farming of the most important fish species; aquaculture fish production; concept of aquaculture sustainability; feeding and aquafeeds used in the farming of economically important fish species; innovative raw materials deriving from circular economy, for the formulation of aquaculture feeds; quality of fish products.


The 4 laboratory practices will include:
1. Dissection of a farmed fish (European sea bass) and recognition and removal of various organs and tissues (0.25 ECTS, 3 hrs.
2. Morphology (macroscopic and microscopic level) of bovine gonads (testicles and ovaries) and male and female gametes; protocol of in vitro fecundation and culture of gametes (0.25 ECTS, 3 hrs).
3. Cryopreservation of male and female bovine gametes (0.25 ECTS, 3 hrs).
4. Nucleic acid extraction from animal tissue samples (0.25 ECTS, 3 hrs).
One of the laboratories could be replaced by a visit to the University Animal Housing Unit.


The course consists of lectures (5 ECTS), and laboratories (1 ECTS).
Slides in ppt with images and text will be used extensively during lectures. Educational videos will also be used to help students to attain additional information, and acquire new knowledge quickly and easily.
Laboratory classes are designed to create an environment in which students are physically engaged through active experimentation. Laboratory classes will be held at the Biology lab on level -1 of the building situated in Via Dunant, 3. The attendance of the labs is mandatory. During the laboratory classes, continuous assistance will be assured by the professor and one or more scientific technicians. Students should wear lab coats during laboratory classes.
Students who exhibit allergies or intolerances to reagents or other molecules that may be present in the lab must inform the professor before the laboratory activity.

Slides in PPT available on E-learning platform.
ANATOMIA E FISIOLOGIA DEGLI ANIMALI DOMESTICI. Autori: Bortolami Ruggero; Callegari Emilio; Beghelli Viscardo. Editore: Il Sole 24 Ore Edagricole; Pubblicazione: 01/2009; ISBN: 978-88-506-5311-9
RIPRODUZIONE NEGLI ANIMALI D’ALLEVAMENTO Autori: Hafez B. Hafez E.S.E. Editore: Pubblicazione: 01/2011 ISBN: 8862921861; ISBN-13: 9788862921862
Fisiologia degli animali marini. Alessandro Poli, Elena Fabbri. II edizione 2018 EdiSES s.r.l, Napoli.
Acquacoltura responsabile, S. Cataudella e P. Bonzi, 683p, Roma, 2002.
The laboratory fish. Edited by Gary K. Ostrander. Academic press, San Diego (CA) 2000.